Category Archives: HIV

Broadway Bares 2017 Highlights

THIS YEARS 27th edition of Broadway Bares pulled in a whopping $1,568,114 in two performances at NYC’s Hammerstein Ballroom to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.

This year’s Broadway Bares stripped away the fears of freshmen and saluted seniors as a journey across the Strip U campus took us to a seductive observatory, exploding chemistry lab, flirty fine arts class, frat party-turned-Greek god fantasy, a lesson in stiletto strutting and Havana, Cuba, for a sizzling semester studying abroad.

Two-time Tony Award nominee and seven-time Emmy winner Allison Janney started the show with a video invitation as Strip U’s president, offering sexy salutations, a campus history and words of wisdom: “Our motto reminds us of our core values every day: Honorem, Integritas, Nuditas, Erectus.”

Internet personality Randy Rainbow and On Your Feet’s Ana Villafañe made special guest appearances as a psychology professor and a foreign exchange student.

In the finale, Instagram sensation Tom Lenk (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), playing a pesky Department of Education auditor who appeared throughout the show, finally saw the Strip U way and offered the university full federal funding. The entire cast of more than 180 dancers flooded the stage, providing an electrifying finale to the show.

Tony-winning director and choreographer Jerry Mitchell, who created Broadway Bares in 1992 and serves as executive producer, and Tony winner Judith Light thanked the audience at the show’s close. “We must take the power of our diverse communities and dedicate our energies to the importance of taking care of ourselves and each other,” Light said. Light and Mitchell also reminded the audience: “Safe sex is hot sex. We can best love each other by protecting each other.”

WATCH  the video  highlights  HERE

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Broadway Bares STRIP U

More than 150 of New York’s hottest dancers will be hitting the books ― figuratively, at least ― this June, but the lessons they’ll impart are decidedly not for kids.

Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS officials whetted fans’ appetites for “Broadway Bares: Strip U” this week with some steamy photos and a behind-the-scenes video. The 27th installment of the wildly popular Broadway-meets-burlesque fundraiser will feature a collegiate theme, and its chiseled cast will “school” audiences with steamy art, math and sport-themed dance numbers. This year’s show will hit New York’s Hammerstein Ballroom June 18 and will be directed by Nick Kenkel, whose Broadway credits include “Catch Me If You Can,” “Evita” and “The Wedding Singer.”

“Class will be in session this summer at the only college campus where clothing is optional and bodacious burlesque is always in the curriculum,” officials wrote in a press release, before promising “a science lab exploding with sizzling chemistry or sculpted studs exhibiting model behavior in art class.”

Created in 1992 by Tony-winning “Kinky Boots” director Jerry Mitchell, the event has raised more than $15.8 million for Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS, a nonprofit group dedicated to AIDS-related causes across the U.S. Previous installments of the show have ranged from 2012’s fairy tale-themed “Happy Endings” to 2016’s tech-driven fantasy “On Demand.”

 GET TICKETS AND Read more about “Broadway Bares: Strip U” here.

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Aids Walk New York 2017

AIDS Walk New York is the largest single-day AIDS fundraising event in the world!

In its over 30 years, AIDS Walk New York has inspired nearly 890,000 people to walk and millions more to donate, raising nearly $150 million to combat HIV and AIDS. The funds raised at the event remain a vital lifeline sustaining the prevention, care, and advocacy programs GMHC provides for the thousands of men, women, and families affected by the disease in the tri-state area. The proceeds also benefit dozens of other HIV/AIDS service organizations that are able to participate as teams and raise funds through the Community Partnership Program (CPP).

During the next few weeks –  there is LOTS  GOING  ON! Fundraising Workshops and  MORE. See the list here and  get  involved!

New to fundraising?

First time participating in AIDS Walk New York?

Need a refresher course to boost your total?  They have the tools  to get you going!   Follow these easy steps to becoming a successful fundraiser—aim high and you could be one of our next Star Walkers™!  Raise   $200-$300  and  qualify  for  cool  prizes!

NEW  YORK  AIDS  WALK

Facebook  page  is  HERE

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The largest AIDS memorial in the U.S.

new-york-city-aids_memorial

The idea for the New York City AIDS Memorial was first born in early 2010 while Christopher Tepper was reading “And The Band Played On,” one of the definitive histories of AIDS in America, for the first time. A midwesterner by birth, Tepper was shocked by how much he didn’t know about the early years of the AIDS crisis, even though he had never lived in a world without HIV.

“I found that what was really disturbing was that that ignorance that I had was really prevalent across a lot of my peers,” he told NBC OUT.

Tepper was equally shocked to read about so many new heroes within the LGBTQ community, who he had never had the opportunity to learn about while he was in school.

“One of the things that was really upsetting to me was that there was this giant community of heroes, of activists and caretakers, who really should be like war heroes up on pedestals and honored by our community,” Tepper said.

READ THE WHOLE STORY  about the largest AIDS memorial in the U.S.  @  NBC

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New York Broadway and Ballet Benefit

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BROADWAY AND BALLET’S BIGGEST NAMES UNITE TO FIGHT HIV/AIDS AT SECOND ANNUAL
BROADWAY AND BALLET

HERO AWARDS

THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS PERFORMING TOGETHER

 The HIV Experience Resources Organization (HERO) has announced that on October 26th 2015 at 8pm it will present, in partnership with Broadway Cares, Equity Fights AIDS, and in association with Stage48, the second annual “BROADWAY AND BALLET, HERO AWARDS,” at Stage 48, 605 West 48th Street in Manhattan. The event will benefit HERO, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization that helps newly diagnosed and people living with HIV/AIDS. www.hivhero.org

The 2015 Honorees are: MELBA MOORE, receiving the Broadway HERO Award; GAREN PRICE SCRIBNER (An American in Paris) receiving the John Adams HERO Award and GAY MEN’S HEALTH CRISIS receiving the HERO Partner Award.

HERO awards are given to those organizations and individuals who have gone above and beyond to help the HIV/AIDS community. The event will screen short tribute videos highlighting the accomplishments of the honorees and organizations, and feature many stellar performances by Broadway and the ballet world’s finest. LBGT advocate, communication consultant, and NGLCCNY Director Jonathan D. Lovitz will emcee. The TONY Award winner and GRAMMY nominated Melba Moore will be giving a performance of her new single “JUST DANCE,” choreographed by Nathan Madden. Attila Joey Csiki and Tobin Del Cuore will perform a duet by Lar Lubovitch called “Concerto 622,” a legendary piece of choreography that was created during the AIDS epidemic.

The event features 14 original performances from top dance companies and Broadway shows: Olympic gold medalist Ioannis Melissanidis, Michael Leon Wooley (Little Shop of Horrors, American Buffalo, Walt Disney’s The Princess and the Frog), Stephen Hanna (On The Town, Billy Elliot), Michael Cusumano (All Shook Up, Chicago, American in Paris), Attila Joey Csiki (An American in Paris), Tobin Del Cuore (Lar Lubovitch Dance Company), Josh Green (Wicked), Daniel Robinson (Hairspray), Patrick Boyd (Grease, The Wizard of Oz, Gypsy, Touch: A Love Story), Cristy Candler (Wicked, Chicago, Rock of Ages), top 20 recording artist Kelly King, Sean Michael Murray (American Idiot), Sean Stewart (American Ballet Theatre), Alina Fay (American Ballet Theatre alumni), Jose Sabastian (ABT), founders and dancers of “Ten Hairy Legs” Dance Company – Tyner Dumortier & Alex Biegelson, Luis Villabon (A Chorus Line), Nathan Madden (An American In Paris, Chicago),directed by Mark Robinson.

Tickets are $25 for general admission and $100 for limited premium seating and are available at the Stage 48 Box Office. For advance tickets and/or to learn more about HERO, visit www.hivhero.org and/or http://www.heronews.org.

 

 

HIV Experience Resources Organization (HERO) is a non-profit 501(3)(c) organization founded in 2009 by Michael Cavnaugh, former vice president of Event Presentation at Madison Square Garden. HERO helps people find the most pressing, up-to-date information available critical to their heath. HERO’s websites, HIVhero.org and HEROnews.org, provide local, national and international resources and interactive tools which provide assistance in: finding doctors; getting medication; mental health counseling; housing; financial assistance; medical insurance; and much more. It also serves as a portal site providing free content and video production, promoting the services, activities and fundraising efforts of many community/partner organizations. HERO chooses and features a video interview of a Broadway HERO of the Month on its website. Many of the performers at this year’s Broadway and Ballet HERO Awards are Broadway HEROes for www.hivhero.org.

Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC) is the nation’s leading provider of HIV and AIDS care, prevention services and advocacy, serving nearly 9,000 people living with and affected by HIV and AIDS in New York City, the epidemic’s largest U.S. epicenter. As the world’s first HIV and AIDS service organization GMHC is an expert in providing services that every person affected by the epidemic deserves. GMHC is on the front lines caring for people who are both HIV negative and positive, including: testing, nutrition, legal, mental health and education services. GMHC also advocates for stronger public policies at the local, state and federal level with the goal ofending AIDS as an epidemic in New York State by 2020. Most recently, GMHC and other HIV and AIDS organizations successfully persuaded the federal government to recommend widespread use ofPrEP, a new daily treatment that is over 90% effective in preventing HIV infection. For more information, visit www.gmhc.org.

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Louis Falcone’s lawsuit against the NYPD

gay-staten-island-man-beat-by-police

Gay Staten Island Man To Sue Four NYPD Officers Over Homophobic Beating/ Hate Crime in front of victim’s 66 year old mother.

  • On June 19, 2015, 4 NYPD officers arrived at the Staten Island home of 31 year old Louis Falcone. Mr. Falcone and his brother got into a verbal disagreement and the police showed up about an hour later after Mr. Falcone’s brother had left and all had calmed down.
  • 1 of the 4 police officers entered plaintiff’s home, dragged him outside and then all four police officers forced plaintiff to the ground and beat him.
  • While the beating was taking place the police officers were calling him a “fag” and a “faggot”. Mr. Falcone is openly homosexual. The police officers stomped on plaintiff’s head and on his ankle causing him multiple fractures which required surgery. Mr. Falcone’s face was forced into the mud and he was unable to breathe. When Mr. Falcone was finally able to lift his head from the mud and spit out the mud that had gotten in his mouth one police officer said to the others that they needed to watch out because he was spitting up blood and that “all faggots have AIDS so I’m sure this one does too.” The vicious beating took place in front of the victim’s distraught 66 year old mother.
  • The police officers also threatened to kill Mr. Falcone’s dog “Looch” who was crying at the sight of his owner being beaten.
  • After the beating was over, Mr. Falcone was handcuffed on his front lawn. While in cuffs an ambulance came (Mr. Falcone does not know who called the ambulance) and the cuffs were removed. Mr. Falcone was treated in the emergency room and required two surgeries. Mr. Falcone was never arrested by these police officers for anything and he was never taken to the precinct for any reason whatsoever. The incident was caught on camera by a neighbor across the street.

 

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AIDS Walk New York

aids walk new york

AIDS WALK NEW YORK MAY 17th

AIDS Walk New York is the largest single-day AIDS fund-raising event in the WORLD!
In its 30 years, AIDS Walk New York has inspired nearly 890,000 people to walk, and millions more to donate, raising more than $139 million to combat HIV and AIDS.

The funds raised at the event remain a vital lifeline that sustains GMHC’s prevention, care, and advocacy programs for the thousands of men, women, and families affected by the disease in the tri-state area. Proceeds also benefit dozens of other HIV/AIDS service organizations that are able to participate and raise funds through the Community Partnership Program (CPP).

8:30 a.m.
Sign-In9:15 a.m.
Opening Ceremony10 a.m.
AIDS Walk New York Begins

AIDS Walk New York is 10 kilometers (6.2 miles). The Walk begins and ends in Central Park and usually takes about 2.5 hours to complete. Entrance to General Sign-In is located at 59th Street and 5th Avenue.

 

Visit gmhc.org to learn more about its life-sustaining programs and services, and to view a timeline of the AIDS Epidemic. For more information on HIV/AIDS, visit:GMHC (HIV/AIDS basics)
NYC Department of Health
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Office of National AIDS Policy
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
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Funding Doubles for Homeless Youth in NY

new york gay homeless youth

New York State Budget Doubles Funding for Homeless Youth;


Maintains Funding for LGBT Health and Human Services Network 

 

The New York State Legislature Increases Funding for Runaway and Homeless Youth to $4.48M and   Maintains Funding for the LGBT Health and Human Services Network at $4.97M

The Empire State Pride Agenda, New York’s statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights organization, today celebrates the New York State Legislature’s passage of the 2015 State Budget, which nearly doubles the amount of funding for Runaway and Homeless Youth (“RHY”) to $4.48 million. The increase in funding is welcome news to the thousands of young people – 40% of whom identify as LGBT – who are forced to sleep on the streets each night and will help to create up to 1,000 new dedicated youth shelter beds across the state.

 

The increase in funding for homeless youth shelters is the result of a successful campaign launched by a coalition of partners, including the Pride Agenda, the Coalition for Homeless Youth, the Ali Forney Center, and Covenant House, under the leadership of New York State Senator Brad Hoylman, Senator Tony Avella and Assembly Members Linda Rosenthal and Andrew Hevesi.  Even singer Miley Cyrus weighed in by sending a letter to New York State leaders. Since 2008, state funding for homeless youth shelters and services has been cut by $4 million. At the same time, the number of instances of kids being turned away from youth shelters each year due to a lack of beds has increased from 570 to more than 5,000, according to state data. While more is still needed to address this growing crisis, this year’s increase will provide much needed relief to hundreds of New York’s most vulnerable kids.

In addition, the New York State Legislature maintained funding for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Health Initiative through the AIDS Institute at the NYS Department of Health at $4.97 million. One major project of the LGBT Health Initiative is the New York State LGBT Health and Human Services Network (The Network). The Network is a coalition of 53 LGBT-specific and LGBT-supportive nonprofit organizations that provide programming and services to nearly 1.5 million LGBT New Yorkers and our families. Founded in 1994 and administered by the Pride Agenda Foundation, the Network consists of organizations like AIDS Care in Rochester, Callen-Lorde Community Health Center in Manhattan and Long Island’s Pride for Youth, providing services that address the continuum of needs facing our communities.  Though more funding is still needed, the funding allocated by the state helps sustain the critical services provided by Network organizations in all 62 counties across New York State.

“We’re grateful to Senator Hoylman, Senator Tony Avella, Assembly Member Rosenthal and Assembly Member Hevesi for leading the efforts in the legislature to make our kids a priority in this year’s budget.  We also commend Governor Cuomo Speaker Heastie, and Senate Leaders Skelos and Klein for defending the funding increase during budget negotiations,” said Empire State Pride Agenda Executive Director Nathan M. Schaefer. “This is the first appreciable increase in funding for runaway and homeless youth since 2008 and represents years of advocacy.  As a result, fewer kids will be forced to fend for themselves on New York’s streets or to resort to survival sex just to find a warm place to sleep at night.”

 

Now that the budget has passed, the Pride Agenda looks forward to working with the legislature to pass the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), which would extend civil rights protections to transgender New Yorkers, and the bill to protect LGBT youth from conversion therapy.

——–

About the Empire State Pride Agenda
Founded in 1990, the Empire State Pride Agenda is New York’s statewide civil rights and advocacy group committed to achieving full equality and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) New Yorkers and our families. The Pride Agenda fights for these priorities by: educating policymakers, elected officials and the public; building coalitions and mobilizing allies; lobbying government officials; administering a Political Action Committee; and organizing and empowering the LGBT community. prideagenda.org

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The Red Ball New York

aids-ball-new-york

In celebration of World AIDS Day, The NYC Department of Heath is hosting the Red Ball at BPM (516 w 42nd Street) on Monday, December 1st.  The Health Department, in conjunction with the New York City World AIDS Day Coalition, will unveil a new report that shows new HIV diagnoses are at an all-time low.

 

From 6pm-11pm, the Health Department will host a free World AIDS Day event to give New Yorkers the opportunity to learn more about HIV/AIDS. Inspired by New York City¹s House Ballroom culture, the Health Department and its community partners will host The RED (Remembering/Empowering/Doing) Ball. This special event will feature a live musical performance by Ana Matronic, DJ Seth Ninja, DJ Sammy Jo, DJ Byrell and Symba, a World AIDS Day themed fashion show, free HIV testing, condoms and HIV prevention/treatment information.

 

On World AIDS Day is dedicated to raising awareness of the AIDS Pandemic caused by the spread of HIV infection. Government and health officials, non-governmental organizations and individuals around the world observe the day, often with education on AIDS prevention and control.

Evening Event: BPM at The OUT Hotel, 6PM-11PM

Inspired by New York City¹s House Ballroom culture, the Health Department and its community partners will host The RED (Remembering/Empowering/Doing) Ball. This special event will feature a live musical performance by Ana Matronic, a World AIDS Day themed fashion show, free HIV testing, condoms and HIV prevention/treatment information.

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HERO Awards Broadway and Ballet

broadway and ballet hero awards

 

The best of both worlds performing together.

Featuring performances from the brightest stars from Broadway and Ballet.

A benefit for HERO – HIV Experience Resources Organization.

Honoring The Actors Fund.

Sunday, October 19th, 2014

42 West, 516 West 42nd Street, NYC

8–10 p.m.  Doors open at 7 p.m.

Purchase Tickets $20 General Admission – Premium seating $100  – Tables of Ten

 

The awards are given to those organizations and individuals who have gone above and beyond to help the HIV/AIDS community.  The event will screen short tribute videos highlighting the accomplishments of the honorees and organizations.

Talent participating in Broadway and Ballet will include: Michael Leon Wooley (Broadway – The Plant – Little Shop of Horrors, American Buffalo, The Music Man, Five Guys Named Moe, the voice of Louis – Walt Disney’s The Princess and the Frog), Stephen Hanna (Broadway – On The Town, Billy Elliot, Principle Dancer at New York City Ballet), Michael Cusumano (Broadway  – All Shook Up, Chicago,” “American in Paris”) ABT, World Ballet Gold Medalist), Patrick Boyd (Me and My Girl, “Grease” and starring in the upcoming movie, “Touch: A Love Story”), Kelly King (“Silver Seagull” Award for best international singer at the Viña Del Mar International Song Festival, top 20 recording artist), Sean Stewart (ABT Ballet), Alina Fay (ABT Ballet alumni), Marty Thomas and The Divas, (Broadway – Wicked, The Secret GardenXanadu),  Russell  Brown, (Irish historian , harpist and Irish dance sensation), and many surprise celebrity guests.

The first HERO Awards Broadway and Ballet will be hosted in order to honor the individuals and collectives that have helped HERO become a valuable resource where those afflicted by HIV/AIDS can find the information and help they need. Our event aims to showcase the brightest in the ballet and Broadway worlds while also screening short tribute videos for the recipients of our HERO awards The awards are given to those individuals who have gone above and beyond to help the HIV/AIDS community. Top talent from the Broadway and ballet worlds, will be in attendance to entertain YOU! There will be five awards presented. The Broadway HERO Award, presented to Jerry Mitchell (on availability), in honor of a Broadway artist who has helped the HIV/AIDS community by promoting awareness.

The Ballet Hero, presented to Ballet Star, Stephen Hanna, who has also gone above and beyond for the community. The HERO Partner Award, presented to The Actor’s Fund, is to acknowledge our partner, who has distinguished itself by assisting those afflicted with HIV/AIDS. The Super HERO award, will be given to a corporation that has shown outstanding advocacy for both the HIV/AIDS and LGBT communities. And a special award given to Stephen Lessard from Orrick who helped us to gain our 501 (3) (c) status.
YOUR HELP:
To produce this event, we need your help. There are many costs associated with putting on an event of this magnitude. Although we have many volunteers, and no one is paid at HERO, we are hoping for your support to help us pay for venue costs and promotion materials including: posters, postcards and donation envelops, press kit production, promotion and PR assistance.  Go to  INDIE GOGO
WHY WE ARE DOING THIS:
Although we have been fighting the spread and helping people with HIV/AIDS for more than five years, we have not ever done a national media event to let people know about the resources we offer. In addition to valuable local, national and international resources and tools, we provide a large amount of video content, celebrity support and coverage for many other HIV/AIDS related charities. We also put the latest news regarding HIV/AIDS from the World AIDS Map which is updated weekly under NEWS.

 


 

ABOUT HERO:
HIV Experience Resources Organization (HERO) is a non-profit 501(3)(c) organization founded in 2009 by Michael Cavnaugh, former vice president of Event Presentation at Madison Square Garden. HERO helps people find the most pressing, up-to-date information available critical to their heath. HERO’s Websites, HIVhero.org and HEROnews.org, provide local, national and international resources and interactive tools which provide assistance in:
· finding doctors
· getting medication
· mental health counseling
· housing
· financial assistance
· insurance
and much more. We also serve as a portal site providing free content and promoting the services, activities and fundraising efforts of our partner organizations including: Broadway Cares, Equity Fights AIDS, The Actors Fund, Gay Men’s Health Crisis, The LBGT Center and Housing works.
HERO produces celebrity interviews and event coverage that support the services, activities and events of our partners. These videos are filmed and edited in-house and provided to partner organizations and the media open free of charge. Celebrity interviews discussing safe sex, and healthy living with HIV/AIDS, have been conducted with Cyndi Lauper, Matthew Bomer, Angela Lansbury, Neil Patrick Harris, Bebe Neuwirth, Alley Sheedy, Kelly Ripa, Mary Louise Parker, Alan Cumming ,Chita Rivera and many other.

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Mothers and Sons on Broadway Using Technology

mother and sons new york city broadway

MOTHERS AND SONS ( the critically acclaimed new play by Terrance McNally) is using Twitter and YouTube in a new and exciting way.

MOTHERS AND SONS is a timely and provocative new play that explores our evolving understanding of family in today’s world.

At turns funny and powerful, MOTHERS AND SONS portrays a woman who pays an unexpected visit to the New York apartment of her late son’s partner, who is now married to another man and has a young son. Challenged to face how society has changed around her, generations collide as she revisits the past and begins to see the life her son might have led.

This past week – reverse psychology was used on Twitter! On Thursday night, the @MothersSonsBway Twitter handle began to spout off homophobic and angry messages about the LGBT community and modern-day strides toward equality in politics. All of the messages were taken directly from other Twitter handles, and thus echoed the sentiments of real people around the world. The charade went on for an hour before it was explained in this tweet.

The tweets, and fan’s online responses, have been compiled here.

A new video advertisement has also been released starring the show’s lead actress, Tyne Daly. This is “A Show About Now,” it touts.

 

MOTHERS  AND SONS

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Kevin Tachman goes backstage for Jeffrey Fashion Cares in New York

Jeffrey-Fashion-Cares-©KevinTachman

The 2014 Jeffrey Fashion Cares

benefit fashion show took place this week!

Vogue editrix Anna Wintour, designers Diane von Furstenberg, Prabal Gurung and Jason Wu, Veep actress Anna Chlumsky, models Constance Jablonski, Kate Bock, Jihye and Nina Agdal, and former Top Model mentor Jay Manuel took in a bevy of male beauties showing off some  sizzling hot spring looks.

Jeffrey-Fashion-Cares-©KevinTachman2014

Organized by retailer Jeffrey Kalinsky, the event raised more than $650,000 – which goes to  a variety of LGBT organizations include the Hetrick-Martin Institute and Lambda Legal.

In its 22-year history, Jeffrey Fashion Cares has raised more than $11 million!

Jeffrey-Fashion-Cares-©KevinTachman2014-6

Photographer Kevin Tachman had the best seat in the house!  Snapping hot models backstage!

 

See all of his photos  here!

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New York Hotel Worker wins $500,000 in Wrongful HIV Lawsuit

The-Manhattan-club new york city

Last week a jury awarded Antonio Muñoz — a 50-year-old HIV-positive man more than $500,000 in a wrongful termination suit against the Manhattan Club, in NYC.  Muñoz’s termination came in February 2011 when he received a suspicious complaint against him after filing a discrimination complaint against his employer.

He was fired in February 2011 after an anonymous — and suspicious — complaint was leveled against him.

The following year was miserable for Muñoz, who struggled to find work and lost his apartment to foreclosure..

 

Muñoz  had explained to a supervisor that he was being treated for a chronic condition that required him to take a medication at night that causes drowsiness, his lawsuit stated and he asked to be moved to the day shift.

His supervisor denied the request. Even after he produced a doctor’s note, his supervisor not only turned him down, she suggested that he quit, the suit says.

Muñoz was eventually put on a day shift but it didn’t last.

His supervisor told him he would be put back on nights starting April 30, 2010, prompting Muñoz to file a “complaint of disability discrimination” with human resources.

Not long after, Muñoz received a scathing evaluation “full of falsehoods,” his suit stated adding that a few years earlier Muñoz r an office manager was awarded two raises and received an “Exemplary Manager Award”

 

On Thursday, a jury awarded him $185,000 in compensatory damages and $347,500 in punitive damages to be paid out over 3 years.

Muñoz, said he was ‘estatic’ over the verdict, but the money was never the point. ‘At least I know that I was able to tell my story,

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Can Gay Marriage in New York Help Fight AIDS?

When same-sex relationships are valued, gay men will be less likely to engage in risky behavior

An HIV positive writer at New York Daily News said, “Research has already demonstrated that to curtail ongoing new HIV
infections, we must effectively merge behavioral and biomedical
approaches with changes in laws and policies that improve the lives of
gay men. Marriage equality is surely one such structural change that
will help us combat this disease.


With the overturning of DOMA, gay people can, more than ever, be truly
seen as equal and valued by others. Consequently, we will also see more
value in ourselves — something we do not talk about enough in the larger
LGBT community, but is a reality we must acknowledge in fighting HIV.”

Read more: By Perry Halkitis
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Gay New York City Lawmakers Meningitis Bill

 Openly gay New York City legislators have passed legislation to expand
access to meningitis vaccinations, in the midst of an alarming and
deadly outbreak of the disease among men who have sex with men.

“Allowing
pharmacists to administer the meningitis vaccine will help us stop a
wider outbreak of this deadly disease which is evolving into a serious
public health concern for the NYC LGBT community,” said Senator Brad
Hoylman, who introduced the legislation, known as S.4881A/A.7324A. “The
best way to prevent illness and death from meningitis is to be
vaccinated. As we’ve seen with the flu vaccine, when pharmacists have
the authority to administer a vaccine, immunization rates increase.”  Read More on EDGE

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Larry Kramer to Receive special Tony Award June 9th, in New York

Larry Kramer is a playwright, author, public health advocate, and LGBT rights activist.  Kramer introduced a controversial and confrontational style in his 1978 novel Faggots, which earned mixed reviews but emphatic denunciations from the gay community for his portrayal of shallow, promiscuous gay relationships in the 1970s.

Kramer witnessed the spread of the disease that became known as Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) among his friends in 1980, and co-founded the Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), which has become the largest private organization to assist people living with AIDS in the world. Not content with the social services GMHC provided, Kramer expressed his frustration with bureaucratic paralysis and the apathy of gay men to the AIDS crisis by writing a play titled The Normal Heart which was produced at The Public Theater in New York City in 1985. His political activism extended to the founding of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP) in 1987, a direct action protest organization widely credited with changing public health policy and widespread perception of people living with AIDS (PWAs) and awareness of HIV and AIDS-related diseases. He was such an important part of our gay history and is now being recognized for his amazing contributions. 

 Kramer will receive this year’s
Isabelle Stevenson Award, a non-competitive Tony award given to an
individual from the theater community who has made a substantial
contribution on behalf of humanitarian, social service or charitable
organizations.

“Writers who are activists are very rarely taken seriously as
artists,” Kramer said in an interview. “I look upon this recognition as
acknowledgment that a serious writer can also be a serious activist, and
no less an artist for it.”

Kramer, who will turn 78 years old in June, won a 2011 Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play, for the revival of “The Normal Heart” on Broadway, which starred Joe Mantello, Ellen Barkin and John Benjamin Hickey.

Kramer also wrote the screenplay for a coming HBO film based on the
play, which will be directed by Ryan Murphy (“Glee”) and star Mark
Ruffalo as Ned Weeks, the young activist at the center of the story.

“We are so excited about it,” Kramer said of the film, which begins
shooting in New York in June. “It’s much bigger than the play. It’s the
same basic plot but one is able to open it up and show much more about
AIDS and also explore the character of the doctor [which will be played
by Julia Roberts] which I wanted to do in the play, but it didn’t work.” –  Barbra Streisand wanted to make to film and had bought the rights  – but she  struggled with Kramer for over 15 years, then gave the rights back to him. 

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First AIDS Generation Reunites to Discuss The Early Crisis Years in New York City May 9th

Hundreds
of New Yorkers who lived during the worst devastation of the AIDS
years, joined by leading educators and scientists, will come together in
a free panel discussion and town-hall meeting to discuss the unique
challenges they face as a group.

 Titled “Is This My Beautiful Life? Perspectives From Survivors of the AIDS Generation,
this first-ever community forum will take place on Thursday, May 9,
from 7-9 pm, in Mason Hall at Baruch College, 17 Lexington Avenue (enter
on 23rd Street). The space is wheelchair accessible. The
panel discussion will be followed by a public forum for attendees to
discuss their experiences, share their challenges and ask questions of
panelists.


The event is free
but pre-registration is required at www.broadwaycares.org/life
. This town hall is particularly targeted at gay men in midlife,
whether HIV-positive or HIV-negative; all person living with HIV; former
and current AIDS activists, caregivers, and service providers; and New
Yorkers who lost friends, lovers, and colleagues to AIDS.

The evening will be hosted by the Tony Award-winning star of Angels in America,
Stephen Spinella. It will begin with short presentations by experts on
aging, activism, mental trauma, and chronic disease. The panel of
experts will be moderated by Dr. Perry N. Halkitis (Associate Dean for
Research and Doctoral Studies, Professor of Applied Psychology and
Public Health, NYU Steinhardt, Professor of Population Health, NYU
Langone School of Medicine and author of the soon-to-be-released book, The AIDS Generation: Stories of Survival and Resilience). 

 “As
the youngest of those people now enters middle age, it’s clear
that—like soldiers—the AIDS generation suffers even after its fight has
abated,” said event co-organizer John Voelcker. “Many members of the
group that fought the ravages of the epidemic, buried its brothers and
sisters, and endured a war that the rest of the world felt it could
ignore seem to suffer what may be something similar to post-traumatic
stress disorder (PTSD). Their depression rates are higher, they may
engage in unsafe sex, and a few of those with HIV inexplicably stop
taking the lifesaving anti-retroviral medications that saved their lives
15 years ago.”


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Meningitis outbreak among Gay Men in New York City

A deadly meningitis outbreak among gay men in New York
City has led the city to recommend that every gay man who is basically
sexually active, and not in an exclusive relationship, to get a
meningitis vaccination.

The  CDC is saying,
“Meningitis is a disease caused by the inflammation of the protective
membranes covering the brain and spinal cord known as the meninges.”

The alert was issued two weeks ago – I didn’t hear a word about it until yesterday when the Huffington Post wrote about it.

The New York City Health Department’s recommendation for who should get vaccinated…..The Health Department issued new recommendations today for vaccinating
against invasive meningococcal disease – commonly known as meningitis –
after an increase in cases. Vaccinations are now advised for men,
regardless of HIV status, who regularly have intimate contact with other
men met through a website, digital application (“App”), or at a bar or
party.

Read more at the America Blog

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New York Historical Society Present AIDS in New York: The First Five Years

The
early history of the AIDS epidemic in New York City—from the first
rumors in 1981 of a “gay plague” through the ensuing period of intense
activism, clinical research, and political struggle—will be the subject
of a major new exhibition at the New-York Historical Society, AIDS in New York: The First Five Years, on view from June 7 through September 15, 2013.


With a wealth of materials drawn from New-York Historical’s archives
as well as the archives of the New York Public Library, New York
University, and the National Archive of LGBT History, the exhibition
will use artifacts including clinicians’ notes, journal entries,
diaries, letters, audio and video clips, posters, photographs,
pamphlets, and newspapers to revisit the impact of the epidemic on
personal lives and public culture in New York City and the nation.  

“For those who lost partners, children, siblings, parents, and
friends, the memory of the fear and mystery that pervaded New York at
the beginning of the AIDS epidemic remains vivid,” said curator Jean S.
Ashton. “For many people today, though, these years are now a
little-understood and nearly forgotten historical period. Yet the
trajectory of HIV/AIDS changed paradigms in medicine, society, politics,
and culture in ways that are still being felt, and the disease remains
with us, affecting some 100,000 New Yorkers and more than one million
Americans today. This exhibition explores a history that we continue to
live.”

The exhibition will begin by recalling life in New York in the
pre-AIDS period, especially the exhilarating sense of artistic and
sexual freedom that followed the 1969 Stonewall Riots, which establishes
the social and political context for the earliest reports from medical
professionals of the physical decline and deaths of previously healthy
young people afflicted with diseases usually found only in the aged.
This section will feature the personal stories of the first AIDS
patients and their caretakers and give voice to the doctors who cared
for these patients. Because more than 80 percent of those infected were
homosexual males, rumors of a “gay plague” circulated. Anchor objects in
this area of the exhibition include a copy of the national medical
bulletin Mortality and Morbidity Weekly Report that first mentioned the disease, the July 3, 1981 New York Times article that was the first national media story, and a variety of reports published in the gay press.

As cases of this new epidemic were discovered outside the gay
community, in heroin drug injectors, babies, and people who had had
blood transfusions, the challenges posed to researchers and those caring
for the sick intensified.  Racing at once to discover the possible
cause or causes of the disease in order to contain its spread and to
alleviate the social and political impact of the growing rate of
infection and death, scientists, social workers, and members of the
affected populations and their friends struggled together to raise funds
and influence research priorities. By the middle of 1983, responses
from the community, including increasingly militant victims of the
disease, began to take shape to demand support for social services and
raise new monies for research.  In New York, even more than elsewhere,
AIDS was a political issue, pitting the Mayor against a vocal
constituency that demanded action.

The second section of the exhibition will explore the impediments
that prevented any quick solution to the growing problem.  An epidemic
of fear swept the city, fueled by rumors and stoked by exploitative news
coverage, as funeral directors refused to embalm the bodies of AIDS
victims, parents protested the admission of AIDS victims to public
schools, and some hospitals refused to admit people suffering from the
disease.  

The third and final section traces both the progress of
research on the causes of the epidemic, the development of AIDS
philanthropy, and the growth of the anger and mistrust that would
explode after the founding of ACT-UP in 1986. On display in this section
will be slides and documents from the 1984 Park City Utah conference
where Jean-Claude Chermann, a virologist from the Nobel-Prize winning
team at the Pasteur Institute in Paris electrified the room by
presenting evidence announcing the discovery of the retrovirus which
would ultimately be identified as Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV),
and would make possible the development of the first commercial test kit
for the presence of the virus (also on display).  


The founding of amfAR
and other philanthropic organizations, and the strengthened role of the
Gay Men’s Health Crisis, also documented here, would enable the
successful public outreach of the following decades.  The gallery will
focus on the landmark New York production of Larry Kramer’s powerful
call to action, The Normal Heart, and will end with the highly publicized illness and death of movie star Rock Hudson in October, 1985.

Also included in the exhibition is a panel from the AIDS quilt
memorializing Roger Gail Lyon, an early victim of the epidemic whose
plea that he not die of “red tape” articulated the frustration of the
AIDs community.
      
The years documented in AIDS in New York: The First Five Years
preceded the founding of ACT-UP, whose commitment to activism and
dramatic achievements will be illustrated in an exhibition at the New
York Public Library entitled  “Why We Fight: AIDS Activism and American Culture” running October 4, 2013-April 6, 2014.



Generous support for AIDS in New York: The First Five Years
 is provided, in part, by Ford Foundation and by The New York Community Trust.
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World Aids Day

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